Posts Tagged 'Health Care'

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Baby Boomers Redefine Senior Living

Similar to retail developers, senior living housing developers focus on creating an appealing experience for their customers. Out are the sterile, utilitarian institutions of old, and in are senior living facilities that cater to baby boomers who are demanding more than the previous generation. 

The Graying of America

Senior housing—be it assisted or independent living—is no longer a one-size-fits-all facility. Many communities are now sporting more contemporary designs and featuring modern furnishings that incorporate technology.

A User’s Perspective on Health Care Trends

Darrell O. Simpson, senior vice president of development at The Sanders Trust, Birmingham, Ala., offers candid feedback o health care segments, workforce concerns, and the benefits of collaboration, BIM and prefabrication. 

A New Continuum of Care

The health care industry’s shift from treating sickness to supporting preventive wellness is starting to take shape on the construction front—and the geographic scope of services is broadening as well. Recognizing this new continuum of care, medical providers are busy building or expanding outpatient clinics, freestanding primary care facilities, specialty cancer centers and rehabilitation hospitals. With those services spider-webbing into the community, main hospital campuses are undergoing renovations to meet standards for private rooms and adapt spaces to accommodate the remaining patients who need serious care.

Exploring Self-funded Health Care Plans

While it’s important to keep up with the news surrounding legislation to repeal and replace The Affordable Care Act, many contractors would be well served to consider another insurance strategy right now: partially self-funded health insurance plans. The bottom line is that the company is going to pay for a lot of employees’ medical care, so it’s important for staff to be mindful of costs because they drive premiums. This conversation alone—that employers and employees shoulder the cost of care together, and that both must be better stewards of those assets—can be a major driver of reduced costs. Aligning the interests of employees and their employers is critical in all aspects of profitability and success. 

Bringing Health Care to Retail Centers

With hospital stays becoming more expensive, the federal government reducing the services it will reimburse, hospitals nationwide consolidating and fewer people traveling long distances for care, the physical spaces needed to deliver health care are changing rapidly.

For the construction industry, this means builders and developers have the opportunity to repurpose former hospital structures and develop ambulatory care centers, outpatient centers and medical malls. This trend can be seen across the country, and it shows no signs of abating.

Rethinking Health Care Construction

Outpatient and walk-in urgent care facilities are far less costly for organizations to construct than larger medical buildings and hospitals; therefore, these facilities are popping up in retail spaces and are most likely on short-term leases that do not require a large commitment from the organization. The increase in the number of outpatient facilities also reverts back to patient satisfaction: Patients are more comfortable seeing their doctors at an outpatient facility. 

Beyond Gaming: Virtual Reality Benefits Construction

VR in computer modeling has transformed early design meetings to allow users to “experience” the built environment before actually building the space. Clients can easily visualize their room or building and gain confidence in the project’s design. This accelerates both the speed and quality of decisions, reduces design times and eliminates changes during construction. When this kind of progress is made early on in the design phase, owners realize significant cost savings.

Remodeling Modern Medicine

Fast forward to 2016 and contractors are regaining confidence in the market. This year’s Dodge Construction Outlook forecasts 1 percent growth in square footage and a 4 percent increase in the dollar value of activity, while Associated Builders and Contractors predicts an 8 percent increase in spending compared to 2015. Health care construction may be picking back up, but—like many other markets—the industry operates a little bit differently than it did before.

The Driving Forces Behind Health Care Construction

By understanding the driving forces behind health care construction trends—and proving their commitment to health care through certification and certificate programs—construction professionals can help health care organizations reach their goals and ultimately provide safe, healing environments for patients. 

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